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Homeless council chief visits

By   /   Friday, July 18th, 2008  /   Comments Off on Homeless council chief visits

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The Santa Barbara City Council’s committee on homelessness July 10 hosted Philip F. Mangano, executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, to present a plan for solving the problem.

Santa Barbara County’s 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness, which is led by Executive Director Roger Heroux, infuses business principles by viewing these people as consumers. The only way to see a decrease in the transient population, Mangano said, is to give them what they ask for: housing. He said his philosophy reflects the failure of previous well-meaning but inefficient solutions.

By tackling the root of the problem, the city will see results in other aspects of community life as well, he said. Studies have shown that providing housing is actually more economical than leaving the homeless to fend for themselves. Constructing homes accrues only a fraction of the financial burden of hospitals, jails and increased crime rates on the general public, he said.

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